5 Ways to Safeguard Your Financial Future With Just $200

By Tim Lemke on 26 March 2018 0 comments

Sometimes it is a series of small decisions that can make a big difference in our lives. This is certainly true when it comes to protecting our financial assets.

Building a high net worth isn't just about generating wealth. It's also about protecting what you have and avoiding disaster. Fortunately, there are a number of things you can do to put armor around your finances that won't cost you a lot.

Check out these ways to safeguard your financial future for $200 or less.

1. Get renters or homeowners insurance

You can protect nearly all of your belongings from theft, fire, and many other bad events by paying a monthly insurance premium that is often less than $200. Homeowners insurance can protect you from lawsuits, disasters, and other things you might not expect. If you don't own the place you live, your belongings can be protected for less than $20 a month with renters insurance.

Bad things can happen. We all want to pinch pennies, but insurance is an expense we should all try to budget for if we want to avoid financial tragedy. (See also: 5 Reasons You Definitely Need Renters' Insurance)

2. Get life insurance

If you are married and your spouse earns an income, would you be able to make ends meet if they suddenly passed away?

Life insurance will replace any lost income, and it's not very expensive to have a policy. With term life insurance, you pay a fixed monthly or annual premium to be covered for a specific amount over the course of a specific term. For example, you might purchase $1 million in coverage for a 20-year term. In most cases, you can get a very good life insurance policy for under $200 per month. (See also: Term vs Whole Life Insurance: Here's How to Choose)

3. Contribute to a retirement account

If you open a Roth IRA, you can contribute up to $5,500 each year and invest in almost anything. Since money contributed to a Roth IRA is taxed upfront, all future withdrawals are tax-free. If you have $200 a month, this will get you nearly halfway to that maximum contribution. A $200 monthly contribution over several decades could result in $1 million or more when you retire.

You may also choose to contribute to a 401(k) plan if your employer offers it. Let's say you're earning $40,000 annually, and set aside and invest $200 per month, or 6 percent of your income. And let's say your employer matches half that. That comes out to $3,600 annually, which can grow to well over a million when you retire. (See also: 401K or IRA? You Need Both)

4. Craft a will

Having a will is especially important if you have a family and a lot of assets. A will offers guidance as to who gets your financial assets after you pass away, as well as who is responsible for any dependent children you leave behind. If something happens to you, you need to know that the people who care about you will be taken care of. The good news is that it's fairly easy to write a will and it can be done cheaply.

LegalZoom and similar online services will allow you to file a will for as little as $69. Even if you go through an attorney, you may only spend a few hundred dollars. A will is a good investment, because without one, your family members may be stuck with astronomical legal bills to sort out the ensuing confusion after your death. (See also: Here's What Happens If You Don't Leave a Will)

5. Meet with a financial adviser

For $200, you are unlikely to get a financial adviser to meet with you regularly or manage your investments themselves. But, there are fee-only advisers who would charge that much for an hour or so, which is enough time to get some basic advice and determine if you are on the right track financially. Periodic meetings with a fee-only adviser can help you develop a simple financial plan and identify a few good investments. These sessions could pay for themselves easily in the long run. (See also: 7 Occasions When You Should Definitely Hire a Financial Adviser)

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5 Ways to Safeguard Your Financial Future With Just $200

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